Definition of herpetology in US English:



  • The branch of zoology concerned with reptiles and amphibians.

    • ‘‘It is an interesting approach to ensure survival,’ said Darrel Frost, curator in the department of herpetology at the American Museum of Natural History in New York.’
    • ‘The coverage of research is extensive enough that it should be useful to researchers, but the book is written for a more general audience making it suitable as a supplementary text for a general zoology or herpetology course.’
    • ‘In this example, the bibliographic file Florida Environments Online and the herpetology specimen database from the Florida Museum of Natural History were selected.’
    • ‘Breck continued research in herpetology, studying the natural history of Manitoba toads and spiny soft-shelled turtles.’
    • ‘But it's not the large size of boas that interests Auburn University herpetology graduate student Scott Boback.’
    • ‘The newsletter gives current developments in the world of herpetology in perspective, including the activity inside and outside the Crocodile Bank, says the Director of the Madras Crocodile Bank Trust, Harry Andrews.’
    • ‘But Cuba's connections led elsewhere - to the Soviet Bloc - not fertile ground for tropical herpetology.’
    • ‘‘Big Alligator River’ is a disjointed, plodding, tacky foray into pop herpetology.’
    • ‘According to the Wildlife Warden, V. Ganesan, the study of amphibians and reptiles, known as herpetology, had begun to attract the attention of biologists in the recent times.’
    • ‘‘Communication is also partly the function of coloration,’ Christopher Raxworthy, associate curator of herpetology at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, wrote in an e-mail interview.’
    • ‘Big-eyed amphibians peer out from nearly every page of this collaborative effort by the curator of herpetology at the Bronx Zoo and the editor-in-chief of Wildlife Conservation magazine.’
    • ‘Curator of herpetology Andrew Gray said: ‘Our work here is essentially about ensuring we still have these species in the future.’’
    • ‘Sam Lee, assistant supervisor in the Bronx Zoo's department of herpetology, concurs, again based on personal experience.’
    • ‘For me, this is the most stunning discovery in the field of herpetology during my lifetime. It's so utterly unexpected, so completely unexpected.’
    • ‘I don't know what else it would be used for, but in herpetology it is used for incubating reptile eggs.’


Early 19th century: from Greek herpeton ‘reptile’ (from herpein ‘to creep’) + -logy.